1 Excludes System Fund results, hotel cost reimbursements and exceptional items. 2 Comprises the Group’s fee business and owned, leased, and managed lease hotels, and excludes exceptional items. 3 Also excludes owned, leased and managed lease hotels, and significant liquidated damages. 4 Reportable segment results excluding owned asset disposals, significant liquidated damages, current year acquisitions and stated at constant FY 2017 exchange rates (CER). 5 Includes System Fund results, hotel cost reimbursements and excludes exceptional items (except for Basic EPS).
Strongest net system size growth in a decade of 4.8% (+4.3% organic), including 56k room additions, up 17% YoY. 18k rooms removed leaving 837k rooms across the global estate.
Highest signings in a decade (+18% YoY) with nearly half of total signings from the Holiday Inn Brand Family.
Continued to strengthen and grow existing brands with increased pace of openings and innovations to enhance guest experience and owner returns including:
Holiday Inn Express new guest room designs now open or committed to in >50% estate globally.
Holiday Inn “Open Lobby” public space design now open or committed to in 80% of Europe estate.
Crowne Plaza renovation completed or on-going across one-third of the US estate.
Kimpton: continued global expansion, presence secured in 14 countries, with 18 deals signed in the year.
Rapid progress augmenting portfolio with new brands targeted at strategically identified opportunities:
avid hotels: >170 signed since launch, including in Canada and Mexico, and brand launched in Germany.
voco: our new upscale brand, successfully brought to market with 16 hotels (3k rooms) signed.
Regent Hotels & Resorts: acquired and brand re-positioned, with three further signings.
Six Senses: acquired brand in the top tier of luxury; expect to grow to over 60 hotels in the next 10 years.
New brand launch: Building on existing mainstream strength, 2019 planned launch of all-suites upper midscale brand targeted at an $18bn industry segment where strong guest and owner demand has driven a ~70% increase in room supply in the last 4 years.
Keith Barr, Chief Executive Officer, IHG, said:
"We have made excellent progress in 2018 executing against the strategic initiatives I set out a year ago to accelerate our growth, whilst delivering a strong financial performance. The investments we have made have had a significant impact, allowing us to further evolve our established brands, move quickly to strengthen our portfolio both organically and by acquisition, and create real momentum in our business. We have made further progress in 2019 with the acquisition of the top-tier luxury brand Six Senses and the planned launch of a new all-suites upper midscale brand.
Our strategic focus on accelerating our net rooms growth helped drive a net system size increase of 4.8%, and our best performance for both openings and signings in a decade, leaving us well positioned for future growth.
Global RevPAR increased 2.5%, with underlying operating profit growing 6%. This, combined with a 19% rise in underlying EPS, underpins our decision to raise the total dividend for the year by 10% and follows the payment of a $500m special dividend in January 2019, taking total shareholder returns announced for the year to over $700m.
The investments we have made have been funded through our group efficiency programme which is on track to deliver $125m of annual savings by 2020. We have successfully implemented a more efficient and agile organisational structure whilst building resources and capabilities focused on the most attractive growth opportunities.
We also further strengthened our owner proposition and revenue delivery enterprise, with the successful global roll-out of IHG Concerto, featuring our innovative new Guest Reservation System. This gives IHG the most sophisticated, cloud-based platform in the industry, with further enhancements set to be deployed in 2019.
The fundamentals of our business remain strong, and while there are macro-economic and geopolitical uncertainties in some markets, we are confident in the year ahead and that our strategy will deliver industry-leading net rooms growth over the medium term."
Update on strategic initiatives
We are making good progress working our strategic model harder to deliver industry-leading net rooms growth
Build and leverage scale – Building a leading position in the world’s most attractive markets and highest opportunity segments, where our scale and resources matter most
Net system size up 4.8% to 837k rooms (5,603 hotels), up 4.3% excluding the acquisition of Regent Hotels & Resorts and a UK portfolio deal.
Continued to strengthen leading position in US Mainstream segment with 26% share of signings in the year.
Further strengthened our penetration in Greater China with 77 hotel openings and 142 hotel signings, taking the combined system and pipeline to over 730 hotels, almost 200k rooms. Our share of the branded pipeline stands at almost 3x our share of existing branded supply.
Successfully embedded new organisational structure, which redeploys our resources into our largest markets to leverage our scale and into new brand initiatives to accelerate our growth.
On track to deliver ~$125m in annual savings by 2020, with savings fully re-invested in growth initiatives.
Strengthen loyalty programme – Continuing to innovate IHG Rewards Club to build stronger and deeper relationships with our guests to drive high value revenue across our hotel estate
Loyalty room revenue contribution up 4%pts in 4 years to 43%, including ~50% in the Americas.
Loyalty members 7x more likely to book direct, and deliver a 25% stay premium.
Testing new features for 2019 roll-out, designed to increase member engagement with variable point pricing.
Enhance revenue delivery – Driving a higher share of revenues through IHG’s low cost booking channels to deliver better returns for our owners
IHG revenue delivery enterprise delivered 78% of room revenues (up 6%pts in 3 years).
Digital (web and mobile) revenue, our lowest cost booking channel, up 13% in 2018 to $5.3bn.
Roll-out of IHG Concerto, including our new Guest Reservation System (GRS), successfully completed. This gives IHG the most sophisticated, cloud-based platform in the industry, and provides a foundation to build out our technology architecture over the coming years. Ongoing development of enhanced GRS functionality to give guests the opportunity to customise their stay based on features they find important – made possible by new ways of classifying and selling room inventory.
Evolve owner proposition – Outstanding operational support and optimised owner returns to unlock growth
Investment in development resources has enabled 18% YoY growth in signings in 2018.
Continued strong traction for our innovative Franchise Plus model in Greater China with 71 hotels signed for Holiday Inn Express in the year, taking the total to 143 signed and 29 opened to date. Building on this success, in 2018, we signed 7 franchise deals for Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza in the region.
Investment in enhanced owner support to facilitate faster hotel openings and deeper owner relationships.
Optimise our portfolio of brands for owners and guests – Maintaining a strong portfolio of distinct and preferred brands, serving the highest growth segments in the largest markets
Mainstream – ($115bn global segment with $65bn growth potential to 2025)
Holiday Inn Express: roll out of new guest room designs gathering pace, with ~1,400 hotels in the US & Canada open or committed to new Formula Blue format. Rapid deployment of new breakfast offering in over 1,500 hotels in the US during 2018, driving 3pt increase in guest breakfast satisfaction.
Holiday Inn: continued roll out of new “Open Lobby” public space design with 80% of the Europe estate open or committed, and 50 hotels committed in the Americas.
avid hotels: Over 170 hotels (16k rooms) signed since launch (129 hotels (12k rooms) signed in 2018), with the first hotel open in Oklahoma City and 27 more under construction or with planning approved. Signed 10 hotels in Canada and Mexico and launched the brand in Germany through a Multiple Development Agreement with one owner to open 15 hotels over the next 5 years.
Planned launch of new all-suites upper midscale brand in 2019 targeted at an $18bn industry segment where strong guest and owner demand has driven a ~70% increase in room supply in the last 4 years.
Upscale – ($40bn global segment with $20bn growth potential to 2025)
Crowne Plaza: $200m Accelerate programme delivering improvements in guest satisfaction and strong owner engagement behind strengthening the brand. ~6k rooms renovated across the Americas estate, with a further 9k committed. Growing momentum behind Plaza Workspaces with 16 installed and 12 more expected in Q1 2019. In 2019, our new modern design and dynamic meeting space will be launched in Paris, London, Hamburg and Atlanta flagship hotels.
Hotel Indigo: Opened our 100th Hotel Indigo, in Berlin, in 2018, with 33 signings in 2018 taking the total pipeline to 92 hotels (13k) rooms.
voco: Launched brand in June, primarily for conversion opportunities. Three hotels now open across the UK and Australia. A further 13 hotels across 8 countries have been signed to date (3k rooms in total) including flagship locations in Dubai and in Egypt.
Luxury – ($60bn global segment with $35bn growth potential to 2025)
InterContinental Hotels & Resorts: Further cemented position as largest global luxury hotel brand with the opening of its 200th hotel – the InterContinental Shanghai Wonderland. Awarded World’s Leading Hotel Brand for the 12th time at the World Travel Awards.
Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants: Global expansion gathering strong momentum with doubling of signings and presence secured in 14 countries worldwide. Opened UK flagship, the Kimpton Fitzroy London, with numerous other signings including Frankfurt, Shanghai, Bangkok, Tokyo and Mexico City.
Regent Hotels & Resorts: Acquisition completed in July bringing 6 opened hotels to our system. Updated brand positioning, with further signings in Kuala Lumpur, Chengdu and Bali, and several new sites under discussion in key gateway cities around the world. On track to grow to over 40 hotels over the long term.
Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas: February 2019 acquisition of 16 hotels and resorts, with 18 management contracts signed into its pipeline, and more than 50 further deals under discussion. Expect to grow Six Senses to more than 60 hotels over the next 10 years.
Americas – Good US RevPAR performance; avid hotels’ momentum continues
Comparable RevPAR increased 1.9% (Q4: up 1.3%), driven by 1.7% rate growth. US RevPAR was up 1.3% with 0.6% growth in the fourth quarter, despite the drag from hurricane related demand in Q4 2017. Canada was up 5% (Q4: up 4%), benefitting from continued strength in urban markets. Latin America and the Caribbean were up 13% (Q4: up 11%), with strong demand in a number of countries including Colombia, Brazil and Argentina. Mexico RevPAR was up 2% in the year with the fourth quarter up 3%.
Reported revenue1 of $1,051m increased 5% (CER 5%) and reported operating profit1 of $662m increased 4% (CER 4%).
Underlying2 revenue and operating profit were in line with reported growth rates, of which fee business was up 4%. Growth in fee revenue from RevPAR, net rooms growth and a non-recurring $4m benefit from a payroll tax credit, were partly offset by $3m lower fees from the termination of hotels and a $3m impact from the Crowne Plaza Accelerate owner financial incentives.
We opened 22k rooms (208 hotels) during the year, with more than half coming from our Holiday Inn Brand Family. We also opened our first Kimpton hotel in Canada and broadened distribution of InterContinental Hotels across key cities with openings in San Diego and Minneapolis. We continue to focus on a high-quality estate and removed 10k rooms (76 hotels). Together, this drove a 2.5% increase in our net system size.
We increased our share of overall industry signings in the region, signing 416 hotels (43k rooms), including 12 for the Hotel Indigo brand. Momentum continues to be strong for avid hotels; we signed 129 hotels (12k rooms), including 6 in Mexico and 4 in Canada. Our first property opened in Oklahoma City, receiving positive feedback from guests.
EMEAA – New operating model embedded; highest signings and openings in 10 years
Comparable RevPAR increased 2.7% (Q4: up 2.7%) driven by rate up 1.8%. UK RevPAR grew 1% in the year with London up 3% and the Provinces flat. Fourth quarter RevPAR in the UK was up 4% with strong leisure demand driving RevPAR in London up 10%, whilst the Provinces were up 1%.
Continental Europe RevPAR was up 5.4% in the year (Q4: up 5.7%). In France, RevPAR grew 6% benefitting from good leisure and corporate demand, slowing to 3% in the fourth quarter due to social unrest in Paris. Germany grew RevPAR 1% in the year and 3% in the fourth quarter helped by a favourable trade fair calendar.
Trading conditions in the Middle East remained challenging, with RevPAR down 6% in the year due to increased supply, and political unrest impacting demand in certain regions. Australia RevPAR was up 1% in the year with good demand growth offset by supply growth in certain cities. Japan RevPAR grew 3% in the year (Q4: up 3%) benefitting from rate growth in key cities.
Total RevPAR growth of 1.2% reflects the increasing mix of new rooms opening in lower rate but fast growing developing markets
Reported revenue1 of $569m increased 25% (23% CER) and reported operating profit1 of $202m increased 18% (18% CER), including $7m of individually significant liquidated damages, as previously disclosed.
On an underlying basis2, revenue and operating profit increased 3% and 15% respectively, of which fee business revenue was up 5% and operating profit was up 16%, driven by RevPAR, net rooms growth and lower costs associated with the group wide efficiency programme.
We opened 15k rooms (77 hotels), driving 6% net rooms growth, including 8% growth in both the UK and Germany.
We signed 27k rooms (133 hotels) including 3k rooms in Australia, our best ever performance. Through the UK portfolio transaction, we launched our new upscale brand, voco, and gained scale for the Kimpton brand in the UK.
1 Comprises the Group’s fee business and owned, leased, and managed lease hotels from reportable segments and excludes exceptional items.
2 Excluding owned asset disposals, significant liquidated damages, current year acquisitions, System Fund results, hotel cost reimbursements and exceptional items at constant FY 2017 exchange rates (CER). See the Business Review for definition of non-GAAP measures and reconciliation to GAAP measures.
Greater China – Continued industry outperformance; record room signings and openings
Comparable RevPAR increased 6.9% (Q4: up 3.4%, impacted by the strong comparables which commenced in Q3 2017). In Mainland China, RevPAR was up 6%, significantly outperforming the market in each quarter of the year. Tier 1 and Tier 2 cities grew 7% (Q4: up 5%) driven by strength in transient and meeting demand. Tier 3 and 4 cities grew RevPAR by 1% in the year and were down 4% in the fourth quarter with strength in resort destinations offset by the impact of new supply in Sanya and difficult trading conditions in Changbaishan. RevPAR in Hong Kong SAR and Macau SAR was up 9% and 8% respectively.
Our continued acceleration in net rooms growth in the region, and our increasing penetration in higher growth, lower RevPAR cities, resulted in FY 2018 total RevPAR growth of 2.0%.
Reported revenue of $143m increased by 22% (CER 21%), and reported operating profit of $69m increased by 33% (CER 31%), including $6m of individually significant liquidated damages.
On an underlying2 basis, revenue increased by 15% and operating profit increased by 19%, driven by strong trading across the region, 14% net rooms growth, and continued benefits of leveraging the scale of the operational platform we have built in Greater China.
We opened a record 19k rooms (77 hotels), driving 14% net rooms growth, and taking the total number of open rooms to over 115k (391 hotels). Signings totalled 29k rooms (142 hotels), our highest ever for the region, including 5 hotels for the InterContinental brand and 15 hotels for the Crowne Plaza brand. Owner demand for our Holiday Inn Express Franchise Plus offering remains strong, with 71 hotels signed in the year. This new model has accelerated the expansion across China of the Holiday Inn Express brand which now has over 300 open and pipeline hotels (60k rooms).
Highly cash generative business with disciplined approach to cost control and capital allocation
Driving fee margin through strategic cost management
Remain on track to deliver ~$125m in annual savings, including System Fund, by 2020 for reinvestment in growth.
As planned, ~40% of annual savings were realised in 2018 and were fully reinvested in growth initiatives.
2018 fee margin was flat (up 10bps at CER), held back by investment in growth initiatives being $5m above realised savings, and $9m of one-off on P&L marketing assessments (and equivalent cost of investment). Excluding these impacts, fee margin increased 70bps (up 80bps at CER).
Reported central overheads were up $15m, ($14m CER); an increase in central revenues was offset by investments in growth initiatives and $3m higher healthcare costs. Central overheads now include the reinvestment of a substantial proportion of growth investment funded by savings elsewhere in the business.
Growth initiatives, and a continuation of our disciplined cost management and strong efficiency focus, expected to maintain future fee margin progression broadly in line with the long-term average.
Free cash flow3 of $609m was up $93m year on year, with $81m lower cash tax offset by $106m of exceptional cash costs incurred in relation to the group wide efficiency programme.
Net capital expenditure3 of $158m (FY 2017: $202m) with $245m gross (FY 2017: $342m). This comprised: $108m maintenance capex and key money; $38m gross recyclable investments; and $99m system funded capital investments; offset by $42m net proceeds from asset recycling and $45m System Fund depreciation and amortisation. Capex guidance unchanged at up to $350m gross, and $150m net, per annum into the medium term.
Exceptional cash costs of $137m during the year, including $106m relating to the group wide efficiency programme ($47m in relation to the System Fund).
Efficient balance sheet provides flexibility
Financial position remains robust, with an on-going commitment to an investment grade credit rating.
Successfully raised €500m, 2.125% notes due May 2027.
Net debt of $1,530m (including $235m finance lease on InterContinental Boston), down $321m on the 2017 close.
Since the year-end, a $500m special dividend was paid in January 2019 and ~$300m was paid on the acquisition of Six Senses.
Dividend growth demonstrates confidence in future growth prospects
$500m special dividend with share consolidation announced in October 2018, paid January 2019.
Proposed 10.0% increase in the final dividend to 78.1¢, taking the total dividend for the year up 10.0%, reflecting IHG’s confident outlook.
2 Excluding owned asset disposals, significant liquidated damages, current year acquisitions, System Fund results, hotel cost reimbursements and exceptional items at constant FY 2017 exchange rates (CER). See the Business Review for definition of non-GAAP measures and reconciliation to GAAP measures. 3 For definition of non-GAAP measures and reconciliation to GAAP measures see the Business Review
The impact of the movement in average USD exchange rates for FY 2018 against a number of currencies (particularly Sterling, Euro and Renminbi) netted to a zero impact on reported profit4. Currency markets remain volatile. If the average exchange rate during January 2019 had existed throughout 2018, 2018 reported profit would have decreased by $3m.
A full breakdown of constant currency vs. actual currency RevPAR by region is set out in Appendix 2.
Under IFRS 15, Fund revenues and costs are now recognised on a gross basis with the in-year surplus or deficit recorded in the Group income statement, but excluded from underlying results and adjusted EPS, as the Fund is operated for the benefit of the hotels in the IHG System such that the Group does not make a gain or loss from operating the Fund.
The Fund surplus of ~$160m, which had built up following the introduction of the IHG Rewards Club expiry policy and the renegotiation of long term partnership agreements, was derecognised from the Group balance sheet at the start of the year on the adoption of IFRS 15. In 2018, we spent the majority of the surplus on marketing, loyalty and technology initiatives, and costs associated with IHG’s efficiency programme. This resulted in the recording of a $146m System Fund income statement deficit for FY 2018.
Net financial expenses of $81m includes interest income relating to the System Fund of $19m (FY 2017 $13m). Excluding this, FY 2018 underlying5 interest expense of $100m was higher than in FY 2017 ($85m), reflecting higher US dollar interest rates payable on bank borrowings and balances with the System Fund and finance charges related to deferred and contingent consideration on acquisitions.
Full year 2019 underlying5 interest expense will be higher than 2018 including $20m interest on the €500m bond issued in November 2018. In addition, underlying5 interest expense will include ~$30m of charges from IFRS 16 and non-cash amortisation of deferred and contingent consideration, $15-$20m of which has a corresponding benefit to operating profit and therefore does not impact net income.
Effective rate6 for FY 2018 was 22% (FY 2017: 29%) with the reduction predominantly as a result of a lower US tax rate following tax reform. We expect our full year 2019 effective tax rate will be in the mid to low 20s percentage point range.
Exceptional operating items:
Before tax exceptional items total $104m charge and comprise: $56m costs incurred in relation to the group wide efficiency programme; $18m relating to a material legal settlement and associated costs; $15m of acquisition costs; and a $15m one-off cost relating to the buy-out of the US pension liability. A further $47m of costs related to the group wide efficiency programme were incurred by the System Fund and are included within System Fund expenses in the group income statement.
Impact of IFRS 16 accounting standards:
IFRS 16 will be adopted with effect from 1st Jan 2019 using the retrospective method of application.
This results in $431m of lease liabilities being added to 2018 net debt under the new standard.
We remain committed to maintaining an investment grade credit rating; the best proxy for which is now 2.5-3.0x net debt/EBITDA under IFRS 16; equivalent to 2.0-2.5x net debt/EBITDA under the previous accounting standard.
No impact on cash, financial capacity or banking covenants. Strategy for use of cash remains unchanged.
If our 2018 results were restated under IFRS 16, operating profit would have been $17m higher, which is offset by a $19m increase in net financial expenses. For 2019, we estimate adoption of IFRS 16 will increase operating profit in the region of ~$12m and reduce net income in the region of ~$5-7m after a full year impact of the UK portfolio deal.
$4m benefit from payroll tax credit received in 2018 will not repeat in 2019.
$5m of joint venture income will not repeat in 2019.
EMEAA: A previously disclosed $15m cash payment was received in Q1 2018 in relation to the termination of a portfolio of hotels. This has been / will be recognised as individually significant liquidated damages as follows: $6.7m in 2018, $7.7m in 2019 and $1.0m in 2020.
Greater China: $6m of individually significant liquidated damages received in 2018 will not repeat in 2019.
4 Based on monthly average exchange rates each year 5 For definition of non-GAAP measures and reconciliation to GAAP measures see the Business Review 6 Excludes exceptional items and System Fund results
IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group) [LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs)] is a global organisation with a broad portfolio of hotel brands, including Regent Hotels & Resorts, InterContinental Hotels & Resorts, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants, Hotel Indigo, EVEN Hotels, HUALUXE Hotels and Resorts, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts, voco Hotels, Holiday Inn, Holiday Inn Express, Holiday Inn Club Vacations, Holiday Inn Resort, avid hotels, Staybridge Suites and Candlewood Suites.
IHG franchises, leases, manages or owns more than 5,600 hotels and approximately 837,000 guest rooms in more than 100 countries, with more than 1,900 hotels in its development pipeline. IHG also manages IHG Rewards Club, our global loyalty programme, which has more than 100 million enrolled members.
In February 2019, IHG acquired Six Senses Hotels Resorts Spas, adding 16 hotels (1,347 rooms) to its system and 18 hotels to its development pipeline.
InterContinental Hotels Group PLC is the Group’s holding company and is incorporated in Great Britain and registered in England and Wales. More than 400,000 people work across IHG's hotels and corporate offices globally.
Presentation for Analysts and Shareholders
A presentation of the results with Keith Barr, Chief Executive Officer and Paul Edgecliffe-Johnson, Chief Financial Officer will commence at 9.30am on 19 February 2019 at Goldman Sachs, Rivercourt, 120 Fleet Street, London, EC4A 2BE. The reception team will be issuing passes to pre-registered guests from 8:45am, and after the presentation there will be an opportunity to put your questions to the presenters.
There will be a live audio webcast of the results presentation on the web address:
This press release has been choosen by Frédéric Abadie
Frédéric Abadie Managing editor of Journal des Palaces, previously editor-in-chief for French radios and newspapers, founder of news agencies for Internet service provider (1998-2002) and author of French politicians biographies.